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Thursday, February 09, 2006

It's a good news, bad news kind of thing

So, it appears CBC has decided to keep their "Reality Check" segment. I suppose that's a 'yay,' though I reiterate my belief that reality checks should be part of every story. There is a 'boo' here, however. Check out this "Reality Check" on Gordon O'Connor's sketchy history as a lobbyist. Silly me, I though the "Reality Check" was where the CBC got beyond the sound bites and spin and tried to shed light in an objective way. This, to me, seems more like an opinion piece or a somewhat biased analysis piece. There's any number of excerpts from this piece that strike me as decidely un-reality-checkesque, but this one is especially good:

But asking the right questions in a parliamentary committee is not the same as making the final judgment on multimillion or multibillion-dollar contracts that are being sold by former colleagues and, one assumes, friends.
One assumes, does one? See, this one would have assumed that assumptions don't belong in a "Reality Check." But this one would also have assumed that the irony of having one of Paul Martin's biographers write a piece examing conflict of interest in Martin's rival's government would send warning signs to the CBC crew. Shows what I know. Post Script: In the interest of shameless self promotion and providing convenient links to coverage, check out my MediaScout post on O'Connor.

1 Comments:

  • Alright a couple things...

    First, the friends comment is fair. If you work at a company from 1996-2004 that is as full of gossip and constant chatter as the lobbying world, to say he earned some friends along the way is a completely valid assumption.
    Possibly the most biased statement that exists in the piece is this one: "And O'Connor is now the minister of the department that will eventually decide whether his department should buy Airbus or Lockheed. Given his active role in the past, can there be any doubt about his own views?"
    However, the thing I really find perplexing about this whole issue with O'Connor is the fact that it is a new issue. He has run in two elections now, has been the defence critic since 2004, and been an extremely vocal advocate about military issues for quite some time. There really was not a lot of doubt that O'Connor would become defence minister, although I did not think Stephen "Captain Clean up Government" Harper would be this ballsy. So why is the media suddenly in a flurry of protest?
    O'Connor's past was known for a long time, as was the fact he was destined to be defence minister.
    Maybe those crying foul now should be kicking themselves for not crying foul before O'Connor was picked.

    By Blogger Dekes, at 1:02 PM  

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